The owner of the Curzon Cinema on Langney Road has admitted feeling shocked and concerned after plans for a new nine-screen multiplex cinema in the town were unveiled last month.
Roy Galloway, who has run the three-screen cinema for 25 years, has fears for the future of his movie theatre after plans for a new one were released as part of the Arndale Centre expansion.
Having already survived the opening of Cineworld at the Crumbles, Mr Galloway is not sure how the Curzon will cope with another cinema practically on its doorstep.
He said, “It came as a bit of a shock because we already have the big cinema at the Crumbles, which seems to work very well.
“It’s definitely going to affect things here. The trouble is, we don’t know what company it will be, all the information is a bit vague. We’re looking into the possibilities but it’s hard to do anything when we don’t know what kind of animal we’re involved with.”
The news was even more of a kick in teeth following the Curzon’s recent decision to spend thousands of pounds on upgrading its three screens to display digital material.
However, Mr Galloway hopes the cinema’s unique charm will continue to appeal to the residents of Eastbourne.
He added, “We faced a difficult time after Cineworld opened and that was three miles away. I don’t know how we’re going to cope with nine screens just around the corner.
“A lot of people still love going to the cinema. We’re a very individual cinema that’s been here since 1920. It has its certain charm and people of all ages do like to come here. The Eastbourne Film Society practically have their home here and we show specialist films for students in the summer.
“It is a concern but it’s hard to know what to do until more information is available.”